Friday, August 31, 2012

Kickers Midfielder Hiroyama Retires After 17-Year Career

Midfielder Nozumi Hiroyama of the Richmond Kickers in USL PRO announced his retirement as a professional soccer player after 17 years Thursday, the last two there, where he had a pair of goals and assists over 47 career games.

Hiroyama was a member of Japan's U-18, U-19 and U-20 national teams and played twice for his country's senior team -- once in 2001, the other time in 2003). He also played professionally for teams in his home country as well as Paraguay, Portugal and France.

Moffat Shot Ties Dyanmo With CD Olimpia In CCL Play

A 57th minute goal by Adam Moffat off a Nathan Sturgis assist allowed a ten-man Houston Dynamo side to play to a 1-1 draw to Honduras' CD Olimpia in Group 3 play of the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League tournament Thursday at Tiburocio Canas Andino Stadium in Teguciagalpa, Honduras.

Douglas Caetano put Olimpia on the board in the seventh minute off an Irvin Reyna assist.

Both teams share the group lead at 1-0-1 with four points.

Houston returns to Major League Soccer play Sunday when they travel to the Chicago Fire. The Dynamo's next CCL match will be September 20 at BBVA Compass Stadium when they host El Salvador's FAS.

Sounders Trio Rocks Caledonia AIA In CCL Play

Fredy Montero, Alex Caskey and Samuel Ochoa each had a goal and an assist as Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders got past Trinidad & Tobago's Caledonia AIA 3-1 Thursday in Group 4 play in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League at Larry Gomes Stadium in Couva, Trinidad.

Kareem Joseph had the lone Caledonia goal.

Seattle leads the three-team division at 2-0-0 with six points. The Sounders return to MLS play Sunday at FC Dallas and has their next CCL match September 19 at Honduras' Marathon.

Union Officially Names Hackworth Head Coach

Turning around a team that started their Major League Soccer season with a 2-7-2 record but have gone 5-6-2 since the firing of Peter Nowak as head coach June 13, the Philadelphia Union announced Thursday they have named current interim head coach John Hackworth their official head coach.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

USWNT Announces New Dates On Fan Tribute Tour

The 2012 London Olympics gold medal-winning and world number one US Women's National Team announced two more games as part of their Fan Tribute Tour.

The team will host Germany October 20 at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL, then again October 23 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, CT.

The USWNT post-Olympic tour begins Saturday with a match against Costa Rica at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY, near the hometown of teammate Abby Wambach, and continues with a two-game series against Australia September 16 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA and September 19 at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO.

Fire Transfers Pappa Immediately To SC Heerenveen

Instead of heading to SC Heerenveen of the Dutch Eredivisie at the end of the 2012 Major League Soccer, as was previously announced August 13, the Chicago Fire announced Thursday Guatemalan midfielder Marco Pappa has been transferred to his new team immediately.

Pappa joined the Fire on loan from his home country's CSD Municipal July 30, 2009 and was signed December 3, 2009.

In 112 regular seasons for the Fire, all but 11 he started, he scored 24 goals and 16 assists.

NASL Names Week 21 POTW Nominees; Campos Wins Week 20 Award

The North American Soccer League announced Thursday the nominees for Week 21 of their Play of the Week compeition.

Fans can go to www.nasl.com to see the Week 21 nominees and select their favorite highlight.

The nominees are Brian Ackley of the Carolina RailHawks, Daniel Illyes of the Atlanta Silverbacks, Richard Martin of the Puerto Rico Islanders, Cristian Dias of the Minnesota Stars and Bryan Arguez of FC Edmonton

Pablo Campos of the San Antonio Scorpions was named the winner Thursday of the Week 20 competition.

Revolution Rallies Behind Joseph Brace In Draw To Chivas USA

Shalrie Joseph had a brace and Miller Bolanos had a goal and assisted on Joseph's first goal as the host New England Revolution countered a pair of goals by Saer Sene and an own goal from Raushawn McKenzie in a 3-3 draw with Chivas USA in Major League Soccer play Wednesday at Gillette Stadium.

The Revolution, 6-14-6 with 24 points and ninth in the Eastern Conference race, are winless in their last nine games and next hosts the Philadelphia Union Saturday.

Chivas, winless in their last four, is 7-10-7 with 28 points and is in seventh in the Western Conference standings. They will head to Buck Shaw Stadium Sunday for a game versus the San Jose Earthquakes.

Galaxy Shuts Out Islanders In CCL Group Play

Jack McBean scored a goal and assisted on Jose Villareal's strike, Tommy Meyer converted a pass from Kenney Walker and Michael Stephens had an unassisted goal as the defending Major League Soccer champion Los Angeles Galaxy shut out the Puerto Rico Islanders of the North American Soccer League 4-0 Wednesday in Group 5 play at the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League tournament at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

The two teams meet again September 19 in Bayamon, Puerto Rico.

The Galaxy, leader of their three-team group at 2-0-0 with six points, returns to league play Saturday by hosting the Vancouver Whitecaps.

The Islanders, in last place at 0-2-0 with no points, travels to the Carolina RailHawks, the league's defending regular season champions, Saturday.

MLS Disciplinary Committee Fines DCU's Olsen, FC Dallas For Infractions

Major League Soccer's Disciplinary Committee announced Wednesday they have fined DC United head coach Ben Olsen for publicly criticizing game officials after their August 19 game versus the Philadelphia Union and fined franchise FC Dallas for improper bench conduct after the final whistle blew at their August 17 game against Real Salt Lake.

Vergara, Fuentes Now Absolute Owners On MLS' Chivas USA

Acquiring the 50 percent of the team owned by former partners Antonio and Lorenzo Cue since its inception in 2004, Major League Soccer's Chivas USA announced Wednesday they are wholly owned by Jorge Vergara and Angelina Fuentes.

MLS POTW Carries Crew To Win Over Union

Columbus Crew forward Federico Higuain, the Week 25 Major League Soccer Player of the Week, made his case for another weekly award this season Wednesday as he led them to a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park in Chester, PA.

Higuain assisted Josh Williams on a 41st minute game-tying effort, then teamed with Justin Meram on Eddie Gaven's 95th minute game-winning goal.

Carlos Valdes gave Philadelphia the early lead on a 29th minute unassisted goal.

The Crew are unbeaten in their last eight games and, at 11-8-6 with 39 points, is tied for sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings with the Montreal Impact (12-13-3), who they host Saturday at Crew Stadium.

The Union, winless in their last five games, are 7-13-4 with 25 points and in eighth place in the standings. Philadelphia travels to the New England Revolution Saturday at Gillette Stadium.

De Rosario Earns 100th Career Goal, United Wins Atlantic Cup Over Red Bulls In Draw

Dwayne De Rosario became the 17th player in Major League Soccer history to score 100 career goals in the 68th minute off Nick DeLeon, who scored off De Rosario in the 21st minute, as host DC United and the New York Red Bulls played to a 2-2 draw Wednesday at RFK Stadium and claimed the season-long Atlantic Cup series between the teams with an 8-6 aggregate goal score for United after both teams played to 1-1-1 records.

The Red Bulls opened the scoring in the 19th minute when Thierry Henry and Teemu Tanino assisted on Joel Lindpere's goal, then caused the tie in the 88th minute on a Wilman Conde unassisted goal.

The draw was United's second in their last four games and the Red Bulls are winless in their last four games.

DC is 12-9-5 with 41 points and are tied for fourth in points in the Eastern Conference with the Chicago Fire (12-8-5). United travels to Real Salt Lake Saturday.

The Red Bulls, 13-7-7 with 46 points, are in second place in the conference standings and host the Columbus Crew September 16.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Dynamo Sign English Free Agent Midfielder Barnes

Major League Soccer's Houston Dynamo announced the signing Wednesday of English free agent midfielder Giles Barnes, who played in 138 games in all competitions over eight seasons in the country, including 35 games in the English Premier League.

He also played 12 times for the country's U-19 national team.

Red Bulls Loan Palsson To Dutch Eredivisie Team

Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls Wednesday loaned midfielder and Icelandic native Victor Palsson to NEC Nijmegen of the Dutch Eredivisie for their 2012-13 season, which ends in May 2013.

Born in Reykjavik, Palsson spent the 2010 season with Liverpool in the English Premier League, but was loaned during the season to Dagenham and Redbridge, formerly in England's League One, and never saw playing time in Liverpool.

In 2011, he made 31 appearances for Hibernian in the Scottish Premier League.

At the Red Bulls, he started four of 16 games.

Union, Perlaza Agree To Terminate Contract

Major League Soccer's Philadelphia Union and forward Jorge Perlaza mutually agreed to terminate his contract Wednesday.

Perlaza played for six teams over 11 years in his native Colombia before joining MLS with the Portland Timbers, then the Union.

He appeared in two games for Philadelphia.

Timbers To Name Akron's Porter Head Coach After NCAA Season Ends

The Portland Timbers, the worst team in Major League Soccer's Western Conference, announced Wednesday University of Akron head coach Caleb Porter has been named the team's new head coach, beginning with the 2013 season, and will be introduced to the media at a press conference in December, after the current NCAA season ends.

Porter will take over for current interim head coach Gavin Wilkinson, allowing him to return to his original duties as the Timbers' general manager. Wilkinson is 1-5-2 as head coach since replacing their first head coach, John Spencer, July 9.

Late Luduena Goal, Assist Gives Santos Laguna CCL Group 1 Win Over Toronto FC

Daniel Luduena scored a game-winning goal in the 90th minute off Oribe Peralta, then assisted Candido Ramirez on another strike as Mexico's Santos Laguna took sole possession of the lead in Group 1 of the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League with a 3-1 victory over Major League Soccer's Toronto FC Tuesday at BMO Field.

After a scoreless first half, Marc Crosas assisted Carlos Quintero on the opening goal for Santos Laguna in the 49th minute, but Quincy Amarkiwa of Toronto evened the score in the 68th minute.

Santos is now 2-0-0 in the group with six points, while Toronto is second at 1-1-0 with three points.

Toronto, the worst team in Major League Soccer this season, returns to league play Saturday when they visit Eastern Conference-leading Sporting Kansas City.

Toronto's next CCL group phase game will be September 25 at Aguila of El Salvador.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Week 25 MLS Team Of The Week Announced

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday the members of the league's Team of the Week for Week 25 of the 2012 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Donovan Ricketts - Portland Timbers

DEFENDERS
George John - FC Dallas
A.J. DeLaGarza - Los Angeles Galaxy
Ramiro Corrales - San Jose Earthquakes

MIDFIELDERS
Mauro Rosales - Seattle Sounders
Federico Higuain - Columbus Crew (MLS Week 25 Player of the Week)
Patrice Bernier - Montreal Impact
Simon Dawkins - San Jose Earthquakes

FORWARDS
Jairo Arrieta - Columbus Crew
Alan Gordon - San Jose Earthquakes
Fredy Montero - Seattle Sounders

HEAD COACH
Gavin Wilkinson - Portland Timbers

HONORABLE MENTION
Osvaldo Alonso - Seattle Sounders
Kyle Beckerman - Real Salt Lake
Jair Benitez - FC Dallas
Will Bruin - Houston Dynamo
Tristan Bowen - Chivas USA
Wilman Conde - New York Red Bulls
JayDeMerit - Vancouver Whitecaps
Dwayne De Rosario - DC United
Marco Di Vaio - Montreal Impact
Bright Dike - Portland Timbers
Terry Dunfield - Toronto FC
Brad Evans - Seattle Sounders
Michael Farfan - Philadelphia Union
Benny Feilhaber - New England Revolution
Matteo Ferrari - Montreal Impact
Raymon Gaddis - Philadelphia Union
Oscar Boniek Garcia - Houston Dynamo
Edde Gaven - Columbus Crew
Omar Gonzalez - Los Angeles Galaxy
Matt Hedges - FC Dallas
Juninho - Los Angeles Galaxy
Kei Kamara - Sporting Kansas City
Felipe Martins - Montreal Impact
Milovan Mirosevic - Columbus Crew
Paulo Nagamura - Sporting Kansas City
Darlington Nagbe - Portland Timbers
Chris Pontius - DC United
Christian Tiffert - Seattle Sounders
Jose Villareal - Los Angeles Galaxy

Sounders' Alonso, Cal FC's Barrera Named 2012 LHUSOC Tournament Award Winners

The Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament, the nation's oldest club tournament, announced Tuesday forwards Osvaldo Alonso of Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders and Danny Barrera of the US Adult Soccer Association's Cal FC were named the 2012 Player of the Tournament and Lower Division Player of the Tournament, respectively.

Alonso had four goals, tying him for second in the category at this year's tournament, and two assists over four games. The Sounders, the three-time defending champions, lost in the championship game to MLS' Sporting Kansas City by penalty kicks.

Barrera, the first winner of his award, led his team to the fourth round of the tournament and Cal FC became the second USASA team and the sixth amateur team in their Modern Pro Era to ever go that far. He is also the first Lower Division player to win consecutive Player of the Round awards since those awards began in 2006.

Toyota Acquires Naming Rights To Scorpions' New Stadium, Local Theme Park

The San Antonio Scorpions of the North American Soccer League announced Tuesday Toyota will become a presenting sponsor of the team's new 8,000-seat stadium, opening in 2013 and to be called Toyota Park, and to Morgan's Wonderland, the world's first theme park designed for special needs individuals, also in San Antonio and to now be called "Morgan's Wonderland presented by Toyota".

MLS' SKC Loans Warzycha To NASL's RailHawks For Rest Of Season

Major League Soccer's Sporting Kansas City announced Tuesday they have loaned midfielder Konrad Warzycha to the North American Soccer League's Carolina RailHawks for the rest of their season, but, as part of the loan agreement, SKC can play him in a September 11 MLS Reserve League game at their training facility against Real Salt Lake and September 25 in a road MLSRL match against FC Dallas.

Warzycha is one of five SKC players who has appeared in every MLSRL match this season, tallying an assist and started in five of those games.

He has also played in two games during their recent championship run at the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament, has scored two goals in 2012 preseason play, made his senior team debut in June in a 2-0 win over Toronto FC, and played in friendlies this season against Stoke City of the English Premier League and Montpellier Herault SC of France's Ligue 1.

Warzycha, a third round pick out of Ohio State in the 2011 SuperDraft, missed that entire season due to knee surgery.

Nominees Announced For Week 25 MLS Save Of The Week

Voting has opened for fans to select the Week 25 winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2012 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.

Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 25 are Matt Reis (New England Revolution), Michael Gspurning (Seattle Sounders), Tony Perkins (Montreal Impact), Steven Smith (Portland Timbers) and Matt Pickens (Colorado Rapids).

Monday, August 27, 2012

Orlando City Will Play Without Alexandre, Rooney In Playoff Semifinal Friday

The defending USL PRO champion Orlando City Soccer Club, who will host the Wilmington Hammerheads in a playoff semifinal game at the Florida Citrus Bowl Friday, will do so without Jean Alexandre and John Rooney, the team announced Monday.

Alexandre has not played for Orlando City since suffering an injury in a friendly match against parent team Stoke City of the English Premier League and Rooney has returned to England to be with his wife after the birth of a new son.

The team says Alexandre could be ready to play, should they host the league's Championship Game September 8.

Bunbury Done For Season With SKC After Surgery

Major League Soccer's Sporting Kansas City announced Monday forward Teal Bunbury's 2012 season is over after undergoing surgery to repair a torn left knee anterior cruciate and lateral collateral ligament he suffered when he assisted Kei Kamara on a fourth minute goal in Saturday's 1-1 draw in Kansas City, KS against the New York Red Bulls.

He ends his season with five goals and the assist.

NASL Names Week 21's Best Players In Thompson, Fitzgerald

The North American Soccer League announced Monday Fort Lauderdale Strikers forward Abe Thompson and Carolina RailHawks goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald were named the league's Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week, respectively, for Week 21 of the 2012 season.

Thompson scored both goals in a 2-1 home upset win Saturday over the league-leading and expansion San Antonio Scorpions and passed Alex Afonso for second place on the Strikers' all-time scoring list. He is now two goals away from supplanting Romario as the team's number one scorer.

Thompson also played in Major League Soccer with the Kansas City Wizards (now Sporting Kansas City), FC Dallas and the Houston Dynamo.

Fitzgerald earned his first career NASL shutout in a 1-0 win over the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks Saturday.

Earthquakes Rock Timbers Before Record MLS Reserve League Crowd Sunday

Sercan Guvensik had a hat trick, with two of the goals assisted by Sam Garza, as the San Jose Earthquakes defeated the host Portland Timbers 3-1 Sunday before a Major League Soccer Reserve League record crowd of 14,121 at JELD-WEN Field in Portland, OR.

Portland's goal came from Brent Richards off a Danny Mwanga assist.

San Jose, 3-2-2 with 11 points and tied for third in the league's West Division with the Vancouver Whitecaps (3-3-2), will host the Los Angeles Galaxy next Tuesday.

Portland, in fifth place at 3-4-1 with ten points, travels to the Galaxy September 10.

Revolution Acquires Toja In Allocation Process

The New England Revolution, the top team in Major League Soccer's Allocation Process, acquired former FC Dallas midfielder Juan Toja Monday.

Toja, from Colombia, played the entire 2007 and the first half of the 2008 season with FC Dallas, where he was named to both seasons' All-Star teams and finished with eight goals and three assists.

Dallas transferred Toja to Romania's Steaua Bucharest in August 2008 and he scored three goals and five assists over the next 18 months before being transferred again in 2010 to Greece's Aris Thessaloniki, where he scored one goal over 37 appearances before leaving the team this summer.

He also played twice in 2008 for Colombia's senior national men's team.

MLS Announces Week 25 GOTW Nominees

Major League Soccer Monday announced the five nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 25 of the 2012 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Jairo Arrieta of the Columbus Crew (G1), Marco Di Vaio of the Montreal Impact (G2), Federico Higuain of the Crew (G3), Fredy Montero of the Seattle Sounders (G4) and Simon Hawkins of the San Jose Earthquakes (G5).

New Crew Forward, DP Higuain Named MLS Week 25 POTW

New Columbus Crew forward and Designated Player Federico Higuain, who scored a combined three goals in Major League Soccer games last week against Toronto FC and the New England Revolution, was named Monday the league's Player of the Week for Week 25 of the 2012 season.

Joining the team August 15 from Argentina, Higuain saw his first MLS action four days later as a substitute against the Houston Dynamo and assisted on a goal.

Last Wednesday, he started against Toronto, the league's worst team, and had a goal and an assist in the team's win, and followed that up Saturday with two free kick goals in a victory over the Revolution.

Galaxy Shuts Out FC Dallas At The Home Depot Center

Juninho scored in the 66th minute on a Jose Villareal assist and Michael Stephens and Robbie Keane worked with Todd Dunivant on an 84th minute strike as the host and defending Major League Soccer champion Los Angeles Galaxy shut out FC Dallas 2-0 Sunday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

The Galaxy are now 12-11-4 with 40 points and in fourth place in the Western Conference standings. Los Angeles hosts the Puerto Rico Islanders of the North American Soccer league in CONCACAF Champions League group play Wednesday, then host MLS' Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday.

FC Dallas, 8-12-8 with 32 points and in sixth place in the conference, host the Seattle Sounders next Sunday.

Kamara Scores, Ties Game Between SKC, Red Bulls

Kei Kamara scored for Sporting Kansas City in the fourth minute off a header created with passes from Teal Bunbury and Graham Zusi, then scored an own goal in favor of the New York Red Bulls in the 28th minute of an eventual 1-1 draw Sunday in Major League Soccer play in Kansas City, KS in a battle of the top two Eastern Conference franchises.

The draw snapped Sporting Kansas City's three-game winning streak, but they still lead the conference at 14-7-5 with 47 points. SKC hosts the conference's and league's worst team in Toronto FC Saturday.

The Red Bulls stayed in second in the conference at 13-7-6 with 45 points and travels to DC United for a Wednesday contest.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Richards Leaving MLS For Championship League In 2013

Major League Soccer's Vancouver Whitecaps announced Sunday midfielder Dane Richards, who they acquired in July in a trade with the New York Red Bulls, where he had played for five-and-a-half seasons, has signed to play for Burnley in England's Championship League starting in January 2013.

Richards has started six of seven games for Vancouver since the trade and has scored two goals.

Earthquakes Rock Rapids; Announce Groundbreaking Date For New Stadium

Alan Gordon and Simon Dawkins each had two goals as Major League Soccer's and its Western Conference's best team, the San Jose Earthquakes, defeated the Colorado Rapids 4-1 Saturday at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara, CA.

Tyrone Marshall had Colorado's goal off Martin Rivero in the 54th minute.

The Earthquakes, 15-6-5, have a league-best 50 points and hosts Chivas USA next Sunday.

Colorado, 8-16-2 with 26 points and in eighth place in the standings, travels to the Portland Timbers this Friday.

In related news, Earthquakes president David Kaval, at a press conference held before Saturday's home game, announced ground will be broken October 21 on a new, privately-funded, 18,000-seat, soccer-specific stadium in San Jose, which will become the team's new home in the 2014 season.

Songo'o Hits Right Note For Timbers In Win

Franck Songo'o's 55th minute goal gave the host Portland Timbers, the worst team in Major League Soccer's Western Conference, a 2-1 victory over the Vancouver Whitecaps as part of the Cascadia Cup series Saturday at JELD-WEN Field in Portland, OR.

Jack Jewsbury and Eric Alexander worked with Darlington Nagbe on his 41st minute goal for Portland, which was countered in the first minute of the second half when Jay DeMerit connected with Kenny Miller to tie the game at 1-1.

Portland is 6-13-6 with 24 points and hosts the Colorado Rapids this Friday.

Vancouver, 10-10-7 with 37 points, is tied for fourth in the conference, based on points, with the defending conference and league champion Los Angeles Galaxy (11-11-4), whom the Galaxy hosts next Sunday.

Montero Hat Trick, Assist Lead Sounders Over Chivas USA

Fredy Montero had his first career Major League Soccer hat trick off passes from Mauro Rosales as the Seattle Sounders shocked host Chivas USA 6-2 Saturday in Major League Soccer play at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Samuel Ochoa also scored for the Sounders and Chivas' Ante Jazic gave one to Seattle on an own goal.

Juan Agudelo and Miller Bolanos scored for Chivas.

The Sounders, 12-6-7 with 43 points and tied for second place in points in the Western Conference standings with Real Salt Lake (13-10-4). Seattle returns to CONCACAF Champions League group play Thursday when they travel to Caledonia AIA, then heads to FC Dallas to resume league play next Sunday.

Chivas, 7-10-6 with 27 points and in seventh place, have a Wednesday road date with the New England Revolution, then have a return trip to the West Coast next Sunday against the league's and the Western Conference's best team, the San Jose Earthquakes, at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara, CA.

Dynamo Host, Draw To, Toronto FC, But Extend Unbeaten Streak

Terry Dunfield scored an equalizing goal for Toronto FC in the 85th minute off Darren O'Dea and Jeremy Hall to counter a 21st minute pass from Oscar Boniek Garcia to Will Bruin as the host Houston Dynamo extended their Major League Soccer home unbeaten streak to 21 regular season games, including 13 this season, with a 1-1 draw Saturday at BBVA Compass Stadium.

Both teams next continue 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League group play before returning to MLS play.

The Dynamo, 11-6-9 with 42 points and in third place in the Eastern Conference standings, travels to Olimpia this Thursday, then heads to Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL next Sunday to face the Chicago Fire.

Toronto, the worst team in the conference and the league at 5-15-6 with 21 points, hosts Santos Laguna at BMO Field this Tuesday, then heads to Eastern Conference-leading Sporting Kansas City next Saturday.

Higuain, Arrieta Braces Lead Crew In Overthrowing Revolution

Federico Higuain and Jairo Arrieta scored two goals each as the host Columbus Crew, 2-0-2 in their last 11 days, edged the New England Revolution, who have gone 0-2-1 in the last eight days, 4-3 in Major League Soccer play Saturday at Crew Stadium.

Jerry Bengtson, Lee Nguyen and Ryan Guy scored for the Revolution.

Columbus is 10-8-6 with 36 points and is in seventh place in the Eastern Conference standings. They host the Montreal Impact, who have won their last five games, next Saturday.

New England, 6-14-5 with 23 points and in ninth place in the table, hosts Chivas USA in a Wednesday contest at Gillette Stadium.

Bernier Leads Impact To Fifth Straight Win

Patrice Bernier had a brace an assisted on Marco Di Vaio's goal as the host Montreal Impact shut out DC United 3-0 Saturday at Saputo Stadium for their fifth straight Major League Soccer win.

Montreal is now 12-13-3 with 39 points and is in sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings. They will travel to the Columbus Crew next Saturday.

DC United, 12-9-4 with 40 points, is in fifth place in the conference standings and prepares for a road trip next Saturday to Real Salt Lake.

Semifinals Of USL PRO Playoffs Set After Wins By Hammerheads, Battery

The Wilmington Hammerheads and the Charleston Battery advanced Saturday to next Friday's semifinals in the 2012 USL PRO playoffs with wins over the Richmond Kickers and Harrisburg City Islanders.

At City Stadium in Richmond, VA, Tom Parratt hit the game-winning goal in second-half stoppage time as the Hammerheads, seeded fifth, edged the host and fourth-seeded Kickers 3-2.

Steven Perry and Aagop Chirishian each posted a goal and an assist for Wilmington.

Jason Yeisley opened the scoring for Richmond in the 12th minute off a Sascha Gorres pass and Mike Burke connected with Edson Elcock on the game-tying 79th minute goal.

Wilmington will now face the defending league champion and two-time regular season champion Orlando City Soccer Club in the playoff semifinals this Friday at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

In Saturday's other quarterfinal game, Nicki Patterson tied the game on an unassisted 40th minute goal and Tony Donatelli hit the game-winning goal in the final minute of the first half off Jose Cuevas as the third-seeded Battery edged the sixth-seeded Harrisburg City Islanders 2-1 at Blackbaud Stadium.

Brian Ombiji scored Harrisburg's goal in the 16th minute off Tom Mellor.

The City Islanders were winners of last year's National Conference and lost to Orlando City in the inaugural USL PRO Championship Game at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

Charleston now faces the second-seeded Rochester Rhinos in this Friday's semifinal at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

Stars, Edmonton Trade Goals In Draw

Cristiano Dias' 17th minute unassisted goal snapped a 243-minute scoreless streak for the defending North American Soccer League champion Minnesota Stars, but Bryan Arguez evened the score in the 74th minute as FC Edmonton played the Stars to a 1-1 draw Saturday at NSC Stadium in Blaine, MN.

Minnesota is 7-8-7 with 28 points and is in sixth place in the league standings. The Stars will host the league-leading San Antonio Scorpions next Saturday.

FC Edmonton is now 5-11-6 with 21 points and is in seventh place. They will host the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks next Sunday at Clarke Stadium.

Twin Tallies By Thompson Give Strikers Win Over Scorpions

Abe Thompson scored goals in the 59th and 69th minute as the host Fort Lauderdale Strikers upset the current North American Soccer League-leading San Antonio Scorpions 2-1 Saturday at Lockhart Stadium.

Javier Saavedra prevented a shutout for San Antonio with an 83rd minute strike.

The Strikers are 9-8-7 with 34 points and are in fourth place in the league standings. They will host the Tampa Bay Rowdies next Saturday.

The Scorpions, who clinched one of the league's six playoff berths last week, is 12-5-6 with 42 points and will face the defending league champion Minnesota Stars next Saturday.

Ackley Aptly Gives RailHawks Win At Silverbacks

Brian Ackley's unassisted 66th minute goal gave the visiting Carolina RailHawks, the defending North American Soccer League's regular season champion, a 1-0 victory over the host and last-place Atlanta Silverbacks Saturday at Atlanta Silverbacks Park.

The RailHawks are 8-7-7 with 31 points and are in fifth place in the standings. They travel to the Puerto Rico Islanders next Saturday.

The Silverbacks are 4-12-7 with 19 points and face FC Edmonton on the road next Sunday.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Chinapoo Returns To Heat As Head Coach

For the second time in his career, Richard Chinapoo will serve as head coach of the Harrisburg Heat, this time in the Professional Arena Soccer League, after signing a multi-year contract with the revived franchise Thursday.

Chinapoo, who was a defender with the Baltimore Blast and Dallas Sidekicks in the Major Indoor Soccer League and the New York Cosmos in the original outdoor North American Soccer League, scored 101 goals and 129 assists in 243 regular season indoor games with the Heat between 1992 and 2000 and was named to four all-star teams.

From 1998 to 2002, he served as a player-coach, leading them to their best season in the National Professional Soccer League in 2000-01, where they won the American Conference championship and he was named the league's Coach of the Year after the team went from a 16-28 record the season before to 24-16 the next season.

Chinapoo was named to the Heat's Hall of Fame as a player in 2001 and the Blast's Hall of Fame in 2009

Friday, August 24, 2012

Strikers Get Tetteh On Loan From MLS' Sounders

The Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the North American Soccer League announced Friday they have acquired midfielder Michael Tetteh on loan from the Seattle Sounders of Major League Soccer.

The 23-year-old native of Ghana is a Generation adidas player, who was selected 20th overall in the 2011 SuperDraft out of the University of California - Santa Barbara, where he had six goals and eight assists in 59 career games, 50 of which he started.

He also played one season there with current Strikers midfielder Alfonso Montglavan.

With Seattle, he started eight of nine games on their Reserve League team in 2011 and was tied for second on the team in goals with three to go along with two assists.

Rowdies Sign Former Rapids Defender Ababio

The Tampa Bay Rowdies of the North American Soccer League announced the signing Friday of former Major League Soccer defender Eddie Ababio, who was chosen by the Colorado Rapids in the first round of the 2011 SuperDraft.

Ababio, born in Accra, Ghana, moved with his family to Tampa at the age of eight and played club soccer for HC United, now called Tampa Bay United) and prep soccer for Gaither High School.

He later joined the US U-17 National Residency at IMG Academies in Bradenton, FL.

Ababio played collegiately at North Carolina from 2006 to 2010, scoring 13 goals and 12 assists.

Blues To Play Guatemalan Champions Septmber 9 In Exhibition Game

The Los Angeles Blues of USL PRO announced Thursday they will play defending Guatemalan champion Xelaju MC September 9 in a friendly game at East Los Angeles College in Monterrey Park, CA.

Xelaju is currently playing in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League tournament.

Neagle, Ricketts Named MLS' Week 24 Award Winners

Montreal Impact forward Lamar Neagle and Portland Timbers goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts were named in fan voting as the winners Friday of Major League Soccer's Week 24 AT&T Goal of the Week and league Save of the Week awards.

Neagle won with 48 percent of the vote to defeat Brad Davis of the Houston Dynamo, who had 25 percent. Cole Grossman of the Columbus Crew (15 percent), and David Ferreira (eight percent) and Fabian Castillo (four percent) rounded out this week's voting results.

Ricketts, who won the award previously in Week 5 with the Impact, had a commanding 55 percent of the vote to better New York Red Bulls star Bill Gaudette by an over 2-to-1 margin, earning 22 percent.

Josh Saunders of the Los Angeles Galaxy and Andy Gruenebaum of the Columbus Crew tied for third place with eight percent each and Dan Kennedy of Chivas USA was last with seven percent.

Earthquakes President To Speak About New Stadium Saturday

Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes announced Thursday team president Dave Kaval will hold a press conference before Saturday's home game against the Colorado Rapids at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara, CA regarding the team's planned, privately financed, 18,000-seat, soccer-specific stadium to be built in San Jose.

Red Bulls Rookie Goalie Down For Season After Hip Surgery

Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls announced Thursday rookie goalkeeper Ryan Meara, selected 31st overall in this season's SuperDraft, underwent arthroscopic hip surgery and will miss the rest of the season.

Meara, who last played July 8, ends his season with a 9-5-4 record and a 1.50 goals against average/

He recently set a league record for rookies of 321 minutes without allowing a goal.

Galaxy Opens CCL Group Play With Rout Of Isidro Metapan

Juninho had a brace and David Beckham scored a goal and assisted on Robbie Keane's strike as the defending Major League Soccer champion Los Angeles Galaxy routed El Salvador's Isidro Metapan 5-1 in their opening game of Group 5 play in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League tournament Thursday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Metapan, who saw Nicolas Munoz score the opening goal in the 17th minute, also saw Jose Alvarado score for the Galaxy on an own goal.

The Galaxy (1-0-0, three points) is tied for the group lead with Isidro Metapan (1-1-0). Los Angeles returns to MLS play Saturday when they host FC Dallas and will host the North American Soccer League's Puerto Rico Islanders, the third and final team in their group, this Wednesday.

Former Two-Time MLS All-Star Toja Returning To League

Major League Soccer announced Thursday former two-time league All-Star Juan Toja, who scored eight goals in 43 games for FC Dallas between 2007 and 2008, signed a league contract and his rights will be available during an allocation draft next week.

The Colombia native left MLS midway through the 2008 season via transfer to Steaua Bucharest in Romania, then was transferred in 2010 to Aris Thessaloniki in Greece's Super League.

The New England Revolution has the first option to acquire the forward in next week's draft but, if no team acquire his rights during the draft, he will be free to negotiate with any MLS franchise.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

NASL Announces Week 20 POTW Nominees, Saiko Wins Week 19 Award

The North American Soccer League announced Thursday the nominees for Week 20 of their Play of the Week compeition.

Fans can go to www.nasl.com to see the Week 20 nominees and select their favorite highlight.

The nominees are Paul Craig and Kyle Porter of FC Edmonton, Ty Shipalane of the Carolina RailHawks, Matt Glaeser of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers and Pablo Campos of the San Antonio Scorpions.

Shaun Saiko of FC Edmonton was named the winner Thursday of the Week 19 competition.

Wings Signs Ferrer, Hoxie To 2012-13 Contracts

The Wichita Wings of the Major Indoor Soccer League announced Wednesday they have agreed to terms with Miguel Ferrer and Andrew Hoxie on contracts for the 2012-13 season.

Ferrer played last season for the now-defunct Norfolk SharX, leading them in scoring in seven three-point goals and 11 two-pointers.

After graduating from University of North Carolina - Penbroke, he signed with the Charlotte Eagles of USL PRO in 2010.

Hoxie had 16 two-point goals and 13 assists for the MISL's Rochester Lancers last season.

After graduating from William & Mary, where he was the 2009 Colonial Athletic Association's Player of the Year, he played two seasons with USL PRO's Rochester Rhinos.

Strikers To Try To Set A Guiness World Record

The first 2,000 fans entering Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, FL this Saturday night for a North American Soccer League contest against the expansion San Antonio Scorpions will receive a pair of sunglasses.

Why, you ask?

Because the Strikers announced Wednesday they will attempt to break the world record of 1,642 fans for wearing sunglasses at night, set July 6, 2012 at a Blues Brothers concert at Chicago's Wrigley Field.

Crew Ends Three-Game Losing Streak, Retains Trillium Cup Over Toronto FC

Newcomer Federico Higuain assisted Eddie Gaven on a fourth minute play and scored off a Jairo Arrieta pass in the 58th minute as the host Columbus Crew ended a three-game losing streak and retained the Trillium Cup in a 2-1 victory over Toronto FC in Major League Soccer play Wednesday at Crew Stadium.

Luis Silva had Toronto's lone goal.

The Crew are now 9-8-6 with 33 points and seventh in the Eastern Conference standings. Columbus hosts the New England Revolution Saturday.

Toronto, the worst team in the conference and the league, is 5-15-5 with 20 points and travels to the defending conference champion Houston Dynamo Saturday.

De Rosario Leads DC United To Best Output Since April 22

Dwayne De Rosario scored in the 19th minute off a Chris Pontius assist, then fed an 89th minute pass to Long Tan as Major League Soccer's DC United defeated the Chicago Fire 4-2 Wednesday at RFK Stadium for their most goals in a game -- win or lose -- since April 22.

Lionard Pajoy and Brandon McDonald added goals for United, winners of two of their last six games.

Dan Paladini and Gonzalo Segares scored for the Fire, who lost their first game since July 18.

DC United is 12-8-4 with 40 points and moved into fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings, the final possible playoff berth. They will travel Saturday to the Montreal Impact.

Chicago, 12-8-5 with 41 points and tied in points with the defending conference champion Houston Dyanmo (11-6-8) for third, is off until September 12, when they face the conference's and league's worst team, Toronto FC, at BMO Field.

Dyanmo Open CCL Group 3 Play With Victory At CD FAS

Brian Ching, Cam Weaver and Je-Vaughn Watson scored goals to lead Major League Soccer's Houston Dynamo to a 3-1 victory over El Salvador's CD FAS in their opening game of Group 3 play in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League in San Salvador.

Jonathan Aguila scored for CD FAS.

Houston, 1-0-0 with three points, is tied for the group lead with Olimpia of Honduras (same), who they face on the road next Thursday.

Before then, the defending Eastern Conference champion Dynamo host the league's worst team in Toronto FC at BBVA Compass Stadium.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

LHUSOC Announces Finalists For 2012 Awards

The organizers of the annual Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament Wednesday announced the finalists for the 2012 Player of the Tournament and the new Lower Division Player of the Tournament.

They are:

Osvaldo Alonso - Forward - Seattle Sounders (MLS)
Scored four goals, tied for second-most in the tournament, and two assists in four games this year.

Danny Barrera - Forward - Cal FC (US Adult Soccer Association)
Scored four goals and an assist in five games and was the first player in tournament history to win back-to-back Player of the Round awards.

Clint Irwin - Goalkeeper - Charlotte Eagles (USL PRO)
Had ten saves in a shutout of MLS' FC Dallas and four saves in a 2-1 quarterfinal loss to MLS' Chivas USA

Jimmy Nielsen - Goalkeeper - Sporting Kansas City (MLS)
Did not allow a goal in a 356-minuted streak from the fourth round of the tournament to its champion game, the fourth-longest in the tournament's Modern Pro Era. Also had three straight shutouts in the tournament and made one save in a penalty kick shootout in the championship game over MLS' Seattle Sounders, the three-time defending tournament champions, in a 3-2 victory.

Forward Brian Ombiji - Harrisburg City Islanders (USL PRO)
Led the team to the quarterfinals for the fourth time in the last six years.

The winners of both awards will be announced next Tuesday.

New US Soccer Channel Secures Rights To All 2014 Road USMNT Matches In FIFA World Cup Qualifying

A new US-based soccer channel, beIN Sport, announced Wednesday they have acquired the rights to show every away match of the US Men's National Team during CONCACAF qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, beginning with the September 7 game at Kingston, Jamaica.

The network also acquired the rights to every game -- home and away -- for every other CONCACAF team in the tournament, except for Mexico, and every South American World Cup qualifying game.

beIN Sport also has won the rights to air games from Spain's La Liga, Italy's Serie A and France's Ligue 1 on the channel.

USL PRO Names Final Player, Team Of The Week For 2012 Season

USL PRO announced Tuesday Harrisburg City Islanders goalkeeper Nick Noble, who had a combined 12 saves in a two-game season-ending series at the Los Angeles Blues, was named the league's Player of the Week for the final week of the 2012 season.

Here are the other players who were named to the league's final Team of the Week:

DEFENDERS
Devon Grousis - Charlotte Eagles
Sascha Goerres - Richmond Kickers
George Kyriazis - Rochester Rhinos

MIDFIELDERS
Kevin Molino - Orlando City Soccer Club
Randolph Burton - Antigua Barracuda FC
Daniel Holowaty - Dayton Dutch Lions
Quinton Griffith - Antigua Barracuda FC

FORWARDS
Corey Hertzog - Wilmington Hammerheads
Andrew Hoxie - Rochester Rhinos
Lucky Mkosana - Harrisburg City Islanders

HONORABLE MENTION
Ranja Christian - Antigua Barracuda FC
Keita DeCastro - Antigua Barracuda FC
Kenneth Ellison - Charleston Battery
Chris Salvaggione - Charlotte Eagles
Darren Toby - Charlotte Eagles
Matt Williams - Dayton Dutch Lions
Eli Garner - Dayton Dutch Lions
Yann Ekra - Harrisburg City Islanders
Bilal Duckett - Harrisburg City Islanders
Jose Miranda - Los Angeles Blues
Matt Fondy - Los Angeles Blues
David Bulow - Richmond Kickers
Luke Vercollone - Richmond Kickers
Troy Roberts - Rochester Rhinos
Tyler Rosenlund - Rochester Rhinos
Steven Perry - Wilmington Hammerheads
Hagop Chirishian - Wilmington Hammerheads

Week 24 MLS Team Of The Week Announced

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday the members of the league's Team of the Week for Week 24 of the 2012 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Kevin Hartman - FC Dallas

DEFENDERS
Jan Gunnar Solli - New York Red Bulls
Chad Marshall - Columbus Crew
Carlos Valdes - Philadelphia Union

MIDFIELDERS
Sal Zizzo - Portland Timbers
Patrice Bernier - Montreal Impact
David Ferreira - FC Dallas (MLS Week 24 Player of the Week)
Osvaldo Alonso - Seattle Sounders
Lamar Neagle - Montreal Impact

FORWARDS
Chris Rolfe - Chicago Fire
Fabian Castillo - FC Dallas

HEAD COACH
Schellas Hyndman - FC Dallas

HONORABLE MENTION
Freddy Adu - Philadelphia Union
Jairo Arrieta - Columbus Crew
Aurelien Collin - Sporting Kansas City
Brad Davis - Houston Dynamo
Simon Dawkins - San Jose Earthquakes
Nick DeLeon - DC United
Torsten Frings - Toronto FC
Oscar Boniek Garcia - Houston Dynamo
Bill Gaudette - New York Red Bulls
Eddie Gaven - Columbus Crew
Eric Hassli - Toronto FC
Federico Higuain - Columbus Crew
Kei Kamara - Sporting Kansas City
Robbie Keane - Los Angeles Galaxy
Dan Kennedy - Chivas USA
Felipe Martins - Montreal Impact
Fredy Montero - Seattle Sounders
Javier Morales - Real Salt Lake
Brian Mullin - Colorado Rapids
Darlington Nagbe - Portland Timbers
Patrick Nyarko - Chicago Fire
Chris Pontius - DC United
Matt Reis - New England Revolution
Franck Songo'o - Portland Timbers
Graham Zusi - Sporting Kansas City

USL PDL Gets First 2013 Expansion Team In Southwest FL SC

Southwest Florida Soccer Club was announced Tuesday as the first expansion team to join the USL Premier Development League for the 2013 season.

The team will be owned by Naples, FL resident and president of Advantage, Inc. Jeff Butzke.

Other team personnel announcements made Tuesday:

- Mick Whitewood has been named head coach.

- Felix Acosta has been named assistant coach.

- Teresa Howe will be the franchise's general manager.

Fans are also asked to visit their website at www.swfloridasoccer.com and select one of three possible nicknames for the team -- Adrenaline, Thunder or Dynamite -- before September 30.

Rockford Rampage Resurfacing In PASL For 2012-13 Season

The Rockford Rampage announced Tuesday they have become the sixth expansion team to join the Professional Arena Soccer League for the 2012-13 season, joining the Tulsa Revolution, Las Vegas Legends, Dallas Sidekicks, Harrisburg Heat and Tucson Extreme.

The Rampage previously played in the American Indoor Soccer League, National Indoor Soccer League and the Major Indoor Soccer League.

From the 2006-07 to the 2008-09 seasons, Rockford played in a league championship game, winning the AISL title in 2007.

Jeff Kraft will return as the team's head coach and Armando Sanchez has been named assistant coach.

Rockford will play home games once again at Victory Sports Complex in Loves Park, IL, where they won the 2007 AISL title.

Wenger Goal Gives Impact Win Over Red Bulls In Reserve League Play

Andrew Wenger's goal at the hour mark off a Josh Gardner assist gave the host Montreal Impact a 1-0 Major League Soccer Reserve League win over the New York Red Bulls Tuesday at Claude-Robillard Sports Complex.

The Impact, 5-2-1 with 16 points, is second in the Eastern Division and host DC United September 7 at Saputo Stadium.

MLS Disciplinary Committee Penalizes Three Players

Tuesday was a busy day for members of Major League Soccer's Disciplinary Committee as they handed down punishments to three players after last weekend's games.

Vancouver Whitecaps midfielder Gershon Koffie was suspended for Saturday's game at the Portland Timbers and fined for endangering the safety of Seattle Sounder midfielder Andy Rose in the 91st minute of last Saturday's game and was fined an additional amount for making an obscene gesture.

Montreal Impact defender Hassoun Camara, who was ejected from Saturday's game with the San Jose Earthquakes for violent conduct against forward Steven Lenhart and is automatically suspended for one game, had his suspension extended to two games and was fined for his actions.

Finally, in the same game, San Jose defender Victor Bernardez was suspended for this Saturday's game against the Colorado Rapids for endangering the safety of Montreal midfielder Lamar Neagle in the 25th minute of last Saturday's game.

Toronto FC Signs Henry To New Deal

Toronto FC, Major League Soccer's worst team this season, signed defender Doneil Henry to a new contract Tuesday.

Henry is the first player from their youth academy to make the senior team and he has started 17 of 28 appearances since joining in 2010.

Rapids Sign Honduran Midfielder Hendry Thomas

Major League Soccer's Colorado Rapids Tuesday signed Honduran midfielder Hendry Thomas, who played on their 2008 and 2010 FIFA World Cup teams and has played in 38 games for his national team.

Thomas began his career with CD Olimpia from 2001 to 2009, but has spent the last three seasons in the English Premier League with Wigan Athletic.

Nominees Announced For Week 24 MLS Save Of The Week

Voting has opened for fans to select the Week 24 winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2012 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.

Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 24 are Josh Saunders (Los Angeles Galaxy), Donovan Ricketts (Portland Timbers), Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA), Bill Gaudette (New York Red Bulls) and Andy Gruenebaum (Columbus Crew).

RSL Shuts Out Panama's Tauro In CCL Group Play

Alvaro Saborio had an unassisted 48th minute goal and Paulo, Jr. assisted Kyle Beckerman on a 58th minute strike as Major League Soccer's Real Salt Lake shut out Tauro of Panama 2-0 Tuesday in Group 2 play at the 2012-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, UT.

RSL, 1-1-0 with three points, is tied for the group's lead with Costa Rica's Herediano (1-0-0).

They return to MLS play Friday at the Philadelphia Union and travel to Tauro for the next CCL game September 18.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

FC Dallas Sign Argentine Forward Matias Jara

Major League Soccer's FC Dallas announced the signing Tuesday of Argentine forward Matias Jara, who played last season for Guillermo Brown in his country's second division.

He also played in second division for Comision de Actividades Infantiles, in first division for Godoy Cruz, and in third division for Chacarita Juniors.

USL PRO Announces 2012 Regular Season Award Winners

USL PRO Monday announced their 2012 regular season award winners.

Dennis Chin of Orlando City Soccer Club was named the league's Scoring (24 points on 11 goals, two assists) and Goal Scoring Champion (11).

Orlando teammate Miguel Gallardo was named the Goals Against Average Champion at 0.780.

J.C. Banks of the Rochester Rhinos, with eight assists in 22 regular season games, was named the Assist Champion.

The league's playoffs begin Saturday with quarterfinal action featuring the fifth-seeded Wilmington Hammerheads at the fourth-seeded Richmond Kickers from City Stadium and 7 p.m. local time, and the third-seeded Charleston Battery hosts the sixth-seeded Harrisburg City Islanders from Blackbaud Stadium at 7:30 p.m. local time.

The lowest-seeded quarterfinal winner will face the top-seed, two-time regular season, and defending league champion Orlando City Soccer Club August 31 at the Florida City Bowl at 7:30 p.m. local time, with the highest-seeded quarterfinal heading to Sahlen's Stadium for a game that night at 7:35 p.m against the second-seeded Rochester Rhinos.

Monday, August 20, 2012

MLS Announces Week 24 Goal Of The Week Nominees

Major League Soccer Monday announced the five nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 24 of the 2012 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Fabian Castillo of FC Dallas (G1), Lamar Neagle of the Montreal Impact (G2), Brad Davis of the Houston Dynamo (G3), David Ferreira of FC Dallas (G4) and Cole Grossman of the Columbus Crew (G5).

Zakuani, Ochoa Lead Sounders To MLSRL Win Over Galaxy

Steve Zakauni had a brace and Sammy Ochoa had a goal and an assist as the host Seattle Sounders ended the Los Angeles Galaxy's five-game Major League Soccer Reserve League winning streak Sunday at Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila, WA with a 3-2 win.

Michael Stephens led Los Angeles with a goal and an assist.

Despite the win, Seattle remains in last place in the Western Division standings at 2-4-1 with seven points and will host Chivas USA September 9.

The Galaxy, who lead the division at 4-2-1 with 13 points, plays the San Jose Earthquakes on the road September 4.

FC Dallas' Ferreira Named Week 24 POTW

Midfielder David Ferreira, who assisted on three goals and scored a stoppage-time game-winning goal over two road games with the Vancouver Whitecaps and Real Salt Lake, was named Monday Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 24 of the 2012 season.

In their last six games, Ferreira scored two goals and assisted on six others and has led the team to their first three-game winning streak of the season.

NASL Names Week 24's Top Offensive, Defensive Players

The North American Soccer League announced Monday San Antonio Scorpions forward Pablo Campos and Fort Lauderdale Strikers midfielder Conor Shanosky were named the Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week for Week 24 of the 2012 season.

Campos, who has won his award for the fifth time this season, earned it by scoring a brace in their home victory over the Tampa Bay Rowdies Sunday that clinched the league's first available playoff berth for the expansion team.

At 18 goals this season, he is approaching last season's Golden Boot-winning total of 20, set by Carolina RailHawks star Etienne Barbara, with six regular season games left to play.

Shanosky led the Strikers to a scoreless draw over the Puerto Rico Islanders Saturday.

It was Fort Lauderdale's second straight shutout and fifth overall this season.

Shanosky has started 22 of 23 regular season games and leads the team, and is seventh in the league, in minutes played at 1,872.

MLS' FC Dallas Loans Luna To NASL's Scorpions For Rest Of Season

Major League Soccer's FC Dallas announced Monday they have loaned forward and Homegrown Player Ruben Luna to the North American Soccer League's San Antonio Scorpions for the rest of the season, but Dallas can recall him at any time.

He joined Dallas July 30, 2010 and had a team-high 26 goals in 29 games for FC Dallas' U-18 Academy team and was named to the US Development Academy's U-18 Starting XI that season.

Last season, he played in 15 regular season games for the Hoops, scoring his only goal of the season in a 4-2 regular season final loss at the San Jose Earthquakes, led the MLS Reserve League in goals with ten, and scored two goals in a CONCACAF Champions League match against Tauro to lead the team in goals scored during the tournament.

This season, he has scored a goal, has started two of seven games, and scored twice in a 2-2 draw for the reserves against Sporting Kansas City May 1.

Ekra Allows City Islanders To Earn Last USL PRO Playoff Berth

Yann Ekra scored the lone goal of the game for the USL PRO playoff-bound Harrisburg City Islanders in a 1-0 victory over the Los Angeles Blues Sunday at Cal State Fullerton's Titan Stadium.

Harrisburg, at 10-7-7 with 37 points, lost a tiebreaker to the Wilmington Hammerheads (same record and points), but claimed the sixth and final playoff seed and will travel to the third-seeded Charleston Battery's Blackbaud Stadium this Saturday.

Los Angeles ended their 2012 season 9-12-3 with 30 points and in eighth place.

Bararacuda Upset Kickers, But Richmond Earns Playoff Berth

Randolph Burton and Quinton Griffith scored goals and played spoilers for the last time this USL PRO season by upsetting the Richmond Kickers 2-0 Sunday in both teams' regular season finale at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in St. John's, Antigua, but the Kickers, despite losing a standings tiebreaker, captured a playoff berth and, as the fourth seed, will host the fifth-seeded Wilmington Hammerheads this Saturday at City Stadium.

Richmond ended their 2012 regular season campaign 11-8-5 with 38 points, tying them with the Charleston Battery (12-10-2, 38).

Antigua finished as the league's worst team at 5-18-1 with 16 points.

Hammerheads Hammer Home Playoff Berth Over Host Eagles

Steven Perry's 77th minute unassisted goal allowed the Wilmington Hammerheads to edge the host Charlotte Eagles 2-1 Sunday in USL PRO play at Manchester Meadows Soccer Complex in Rock Hill, SC and earn a berth in the league playoffs, beginning this Saturday.

Corey Hertzog scored in the 29th minute for Wilmington and Darren Toby had Charlotte's lone goal in the 58th minute.

Wilmington ended their 2012 regular season at 10-7-7 with 37 points, but won a tiebreaker over the Harrisburg City Islanders (same) to take the fifth seed in the playoffs and travel to the fourth-seeded Richmond Kickers this Saturday.

Charlotte ended their 2012 regular season in seventh place at 11-10-3 with 36 points.

Campos Brace Leads Scorpions In Clinching NASL Playoff Berth

Pablo Campos had a brace and Walter Ramirez and Esteban Bayona each added a goal as the North American Soccer League-leading San Antonio Scorpions clinched the league's first playoff berth with a 4-0 shutout of the Tampa Bay Rowdies Sunday at Heroes Stadium in San Antonio.

San Antonio is 12-4-6 with 42 points and next hosts the Fort Lauderdale Strikers this Saturday.

The Rowdies are 10-7-5 with 35 points and tied for record and points with the Puerto Rico Islanders, who Tampa Bay hosts this Saturday.

Dynamo, Crew Draw At BBVA Compass

The Houston Dynamo and the Columbus Crew played to a 2-2 draw Sunday in Major League Soccer play at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, TX.

Brad Davis put Houston on top in the 19th minute off an Oscar Boniek Garcia pass, but Columbus tied the game in the 33rd minute as Dilly Duka and Eddie Gaven teamed to assist Cole Grossman on a goal.

Gavin gave the Crew a 2-1 lead in the 58th minute off a feed from Federico Higuain, but Adam Moffat's unassisted 82nd minute strike eventually ended the game in a draw.

Houston, the defending Eastern Conference champion, is 11-6-8 with 41 points and tied for third place in the Eastern Conference with the Chicago Fire (12-7-5).

Columbus is 8-8-6 with 30 points and in seventh place in the conference's standings.

Both teams next host the league's worst overall team in Toronto FC -- Columbus Wednesday, Houston Saturday.

Red Bulls Rally To Chop Down Timbers

After spotting the Portland Timbers, the worst team in Major League Soccer's Western Conference, a 2-0 lead, Heath Pierce's goal in the 83rd minute off assists by Jan Gunnar Solli and Kenny Cooper ended the New York Red Bulls' 3-2 come-from-behind win Sunday at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ.

Portland got their lead with an eighth minute goal from Bright Dike, assisted by Sal Zizzo and Koskue Kimura, and a 32nd minute strike from Darlington Nagbe, assisted by Zizzo and Franck Songo'o.

New York struck back with two goals in the final two minutes of the half by Cooper off Solli and Dax McCarty passes in the 42nd minute and Tim Cahill's unassisted blast at the 45 minute mark.

The Red Bulls are now second in the Eastern Conference standings at 13-7-5 with 44 points and will face the conference's top team, Sporting Kansas City, at Livestrong Sporting Park next Sunday.

Portland is 5-13-6 with 21 points and is off until August 31 when they host Chivas USA at JELD-WEN Field.

United, Union Play To Draw At RFK Stadium

Host DC United and the Philadelphia Union played to a 1-1 draw Sunday in Major League Soccer action from RFK Stadium in Washington, DC.

Brain Carroll put the Union on the board first with an eighth minute unassisted goal, but United gained an own goal by Philadelphia's Anobi Okugo for the draw.

The tie ended a two-game losing streak for the Union and DC has won one game out of their last five.

DC is in fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings at 11-8-4 with 37 points. They will host the Chicago Fire Wednesday, then travel to the Montreal Impact this Saturday.

Philadelphia, 7-12-3 with 24 points and in eighth place in the conference standings, hosts Real Salt Lake Friday.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Rhinos Earn Playoff Berth, But Need Help To Clinch

Andrew Hoxie scored the lone goal for the Rochester Rhinos in the 87th minute off Tyler Rosenlund as they shut out the Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1-0 Saturday in USL PRO play at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

The Rhinos, 12-7-5 with 41 points, are in second place in the league standings and can clinch a playoff berth if the league's worst team, Antigua Barracuda FC, upsets the Richmond Kickers by winning or playing to a draw.

Should Richmond wins, goal differential between them and the Rhinos will decide who moves on to the playoffs.

Pittsburgh ends their 2012 campaign with a tenth place record of 4-15-5 with 17 points.

Eagles End Hammerheads Home Unbeaten Streak

Devon Grousis' 47th minute goal off Chris Salvaggione allowed the Charlotte Eagles to shut out the host Wilmington Hammerheads 1-0 in the final weekend of regular season play Saturday at Legion Stadium and snap Wilmington's 12-game USL PRO unbeaten streak at home.

The Eagles, 11-9-3 with 36 points for fifth place in the league standings, need a point in Sunday's game against them at Manchester Meadows Soccer Complex in Rock Hill, SC to clinch a playoff berth or have the Harrisburg City Islanders lose or play to a draw to the Los Angeles Blues at Cal State Fullerton Sunday.

Wimington, 9-7-7 with 34 points, tied for the sixth and final playoff spot with the City Islanders, who lost to Orlando City Soccer Club in the inaugural championship game, clinch a playoff spot with a win Sunday or if they match the City Islanders' result to the Blues.

Palacio Passes Led RailHawks In Comeback Win Over FC Edmonton

Mike Palacio assisted on goals by Zach Schilawski in the 79th minute and Ty Shipalane in the 90th as the host and defending North American Soccer League regular season champion Carolina RailHawks came from behind to beat FC Edmonton 3-2 Saturday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.

Paul Craig put Edmonton on top with an unassisted ninth minute goal, but Nick Zimmerman tied the game as Carolina scored in the 30th minute before Kyle Porter put the Edmonton back in the lead in the 72nd minute.

Carolina, 7-7-7 with 28 points, is tied for fifth place with the defending league champion Minnesota Stars (7-8-7). The RailHawks travel next Saturday to the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks.

Edmonton is in seventh place with a 5-11-6 record and 21 points. They host the Stars next Saturday at Clarke Stadium.

Rapids, Chivas Play To 1-1 Draw At Dick's Sporting Goods Park

The host Colorado Rapids played Chivas USA to a 1-1 draw in Major League Soccer play Saturday at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO.

Brian Mullin's unassisted 19th minute goal for Colorado was leveled in the 83rd minute by Juan Pablo Angel, assisted by Tristan Bowen and Casey Townsend.

Chivas is 7-9-6 with 27 points and is in seventh place in the Western Conference. They will host the Seattle Sounders next Saturday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Colorado, 8-15-2 with 26 points and a notch below in eighth place, travels to face the league's and the conference's best team in the San Jose Earthquakes.

FC Dallas Wins First Franchise Game At Rio Tinto Stadium

David Fereira assisted Fabian Castillo on his 61st minute goal, then handed FC Dallas their first win in Major League Soccer franchise history against Real Salr Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, UT in a 2-1 victory Saturday.

RSL tied the game in the 76th minute when Javier Morales fed a pass to Alvaro Saborio.

FC Dallas has now won their last three games, while RSL is winless in their last three league games and last four games in all competitions.

FC Dallas is 8-11-8 with 32 points and in sixth place in the Western Conference standings. They will face the defending league champion Los Angeles Galaxy at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA next Sunday.

RSL is 13-10-3 with 42 points and in second place in the conference standings. They step out of league play Tuesday to host Tauro in the next round of 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League play, then return to MLS action Friday at the Philadelphia Union.

Fire Edge Revolution For Third Straight Win

Sherjill McDonald was assisted on a game-winning 25th minute goal by Patrick Nyarko and Gonzalo Segares as the host Chicago Fire defeated the New England Revolution 2-1 Saturday at Toyota Park for their third straight Major League Soccer win.

Chris Rolfe opened play for Chicago with a ninth minute unassisted goal, but New England countered two minutes later from Fernando Cardenas.

The Fire are 12-7-5 with 41 points, sharing the same second place record in the Eastern Conference with the New York Red Bulls. Chicago heads to DC United for a Wednesday contest.

New England, who scored one goal for the seventh time this season, extended their winless streak to seven games. At 6-13-5 with 23 points, they are tied for eighth in points in the conference with the Philadelphia Union (7-12-2). The Revolution travels to the Columbus Crew next Saturday.

Bernier Goal, Assist Carry Impact To Win Over Quakes

Patrice Bernier assisted on a game-winning 61st minute goal by Lamar Neagle and later had an unassisted score in the 72nd minute as the host Montreal Impact upset the best team in Major League Soccer and its Western Conference, the San Jose Earthquakes, 3-1 Saturday at Saputo Stadium.

San Jose's Chris Wondolowski scored his Golden Boot-leading 18th goal of the season to snap a four-game scoreless streak early on, but Felipe Martins connected with Marco Di Vaio on a game-tying 25th minute strike.

Montreal improved to 11-13-3 with 36 points and is in fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings. The Impact host DC United next Saturday.

San Jose, 14-6-5 with 47 points, hosts the Colorado Rapids next Saturday.

Late Kamara Goal Keeps SKC Atop Eastern Conference Standings

Kei Kamara's 83rd minute goal off Graham Zusi allowed Sporting Kansas City to remain atop Major League Soccer's Eastern Conference standings Saturday with a 1-0 victory at BMO Field against Toronto FC, the league's and conference's worst team.

SKC has won their last three games, while Toronto has gone 0-3-1 in their last four.

Kansas City is 14-7-4 with 46 points and hosts the New York Red Bulls at Livestrong Soccer Park next Sunday.

Toronto FC is 5-14-5 with 20 points and has road games this Wednesday against the Columbus Crew and next Saturday at the Houston Dynamo.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

USL PRO Reschedules Eagles-Hammerheads Game For Sunday

USL PRO announced Saturday that Friday's scheduled game at Wingate University between the host Charlotte Eagles and the Wilmington Hammerheads, postponed due to unplayable field conditions, will be played Sunday at 7 p.m. Eastern time at Manchester Meadows Soccer Complex in Rock Hill, SC.

The two teams play Saturday night at Legion Stadium in Wilmington, NC.

Sounders Shut Out Whitecaps; Robson Suspended For Game, Fined

Fredy Montero was assisted by Jeff Parke and Mauro Rosales on a 64th minute goal and Brad Evans and Osvaldo Alonso teamed with Eddie Johnson on his 87th minute strike as the host Seattle Sounders shut out the Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0 Saturday at CenturyLink Field in Seattle in Major League Soccer play.

Hours before the game, MLS' Disciplinary Committtee announced a fine and one-game suspension were issued to Whitecaps midfielder Barry Robson for aggravated dissent toward an assistant referee in second-half stoppage time of Vancouver's 2-0 home loss at BC Place Wednesday to FC Dallas.

Seattle is in third place in the Eastern Conference standings at 11-6-7 with 40 points and travels to Chivas USA next Saturday.

Vancouver, 10-9-7 with 37 points, tied with the defending league and conference champion Los Angeles Galaxy (11-11-4) in points, faces the Portland Timbers in a road game next Saturday.

Rowdies Sign Former Silverbacks Midfielder Cox

The Tampa Bay Rowdies of the North American Soccer League signed former Atlanta Silverbacks midfielder Raphael Cox to a contract Friday.

Cox scored four goals and four assists in 43 appearances over the 2011 and 2012 NASL season at Atlanta,

Before Atlanta, Cox played the 2010 season in the USL Premier Development League.

He was selected in the fourth round of the 2009 Major League Soccer SuperDraft by Real Salt Lake, where he played in six games and scored a goal.

Dutch Lions Draw To Orlando City At FCB

A late goal by Daniel Holovaty overshadowed an own goal made by teammate Mettin Copier as the Dayton Dutch Lions played the two-time USL PRO regular season champion Orlando City Soccer Club to a 1-1 draw Friday in the host's final home game of the 2012 season at the Florida Citrus Bowl before a new home record crowd of 8,932.

Orlando City ends its regular season with a 17-1-6 record with 57 points and gains a bye into the playoff semifinals, along with whomever finishes second in the standings, to be decided by results of Saturday games.

Dayton, 4-10-9 with 21 points and in ninth place in the standings, ends their regular season on the road Saturday against the Charleston Battery, one of five teams in the running for four available playoff berths,

Blues Tie City Islanders, But Lose Out On Playoff Berth

Goals by Maykel Galindo and Matt Fondy matched goals by Bilal Duckett and Lucky Mkosana as the host Los Angeles Blues played to a 2-2 draw to the Harrisburg City Islanders Friday in USL PRO play at Fullerton College in Fullerton, CA, but the draw officially eliminated the Blues from playoff contention.

Harrisburg is 9-7-7 with 34 points and shares fifth place with the Wilmington Hammerheads (9-6-2). The Hammerheads were scheduled to face the Charlotte Eagles at Wingate University in Wingate, NC Friday, but the game was postponed due to unplayable conditions and will be rescheduled by USL PRO officials.

The Blue are now in eighth place at 9-11-3 with 30 points.

Los Angeles and Harrisburg end their 2012 regular seasons Sunday at Titan Stadium at Cal State Fullerton.

Kickers Shut Out Barracuda, Lock Up Playoff Berth

David Bulow's 61st minute goal off a Sascha Gorres assist gave the Richmond Kickers a 1-0 road victory over Antigua Barracuda FC Friday at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in St. John's, Antigua in the first game of a season-ending two-game series to officially clinch a USL PRO playoff berth.

The Kickers are in second place with the Rochester Rhinos, both of whom share an 11-7-5 record with 38 points.

Antigua is the league's worst team at 4-18-1 with 13 points.

Both teams close out the season Sunday in St. John's.

NASL Names Week 19 POTW Nominees; Yamada Wins Week 18 Award

The North American Soccer League announced Friday the nominees for Week 19 of their Play of the Week competition.

Fans can go to www.nasl.com to see the Week 19 nominees and select their favorite highlight.

The nominees are Yashir Pinto and Shaun Saiko of FC Edmonton, Ray Burse of the Carolina RailHawks, Andy Herron of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers and Daniel Illyes of the Atlanta Silverbacks.

Takuta Yamada of the Tampa Bay Rowdies was named the winner Friday of the Week 18 competition.

Chivas USA Finally Signs Burling To Deal

Despite gaining his rights in a trade with the Montreal Impact in exchange for an international roster spot for the 2013 season, Major League Soccer's Chivas USA announced Friday they have signed defender Bobby Burling to a second stint.

Burling was selected in the 2007 MLS Supplemental Draft by the Los Angeles Galaxy out of Loyola Marymount University, but signed months later with Chivas and appeared in 23 games between the 2009 and 2009 seasons.

He then went to the San Jose Earthquakes, where he played the 2009 and 2010 seasons, then was left unprotected by them and selected by the Impact in the 2011 MLS Expansion Draft.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Fans Let Montreal Players Sweep MLS Weekly Awards

Fans voting in this week's election to decide the Week 22 winners of Major League Soccer's AT&T Goal of the Week and league Save of the Week awards allowed players from the Montreal Impact to sweep the awards, the league announced Friday.

Forward Sanna Nyassi captured 45 percent of the GOTW vote to edge defeat Juninho of the Los Angeles Galaxy (31 percent), Dane Richards of the Vancouver Whitecaps (13 percent), Chris Rolfe of the Chicago Fire (nine percent) and Jair Benitez of FC Dallas (five percent).

Goalkeeper Troy Perkins, who last won the SOTW award in Week 12 while with the Portland Timbers, easily won this week's honor, tallying 51.53 percent of the vote.

Last week's winner, Kevin Hartman of FC Dallas, was second with 24.19 percent of the vote, followed by Dan Kennedy of Chivas USA (17.5 percent), Bill Hamid of DC United (3.5 percent) and Zac MacMath of the Philadelphia Union (3.28 percent).

Fire Loan Grazzini To Argentinian Team

Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire announced Friday they have loaned midfielder Sebastian Grazzini to Atletico Rafaela of Argentina's Primera Division for an undisclosed period of time.

Grazzini, who last played for Chicago June 23, had seven goals and nine assists in 25 games this season.

Ogunbiyi Parts Ways With Red Bulls After Failing Physical

Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls announced Friday they have parted ways with defender Babajide Ogunbiyi after he failed a team physical.

He was acquired July 31 after playing since 2010 with Viborg FF in the Danish First Division after being drafted by the Red Bulls with 18th overall pick in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft but refused to sign with them.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Blues Ink Iranian Player For Final Series Of Season

The Los Angeles Blues of USL PRO announced Thursday they have signed Iranian National Team player Dariush Yazdani to play in the team's final two games of the regular season Friday and Sunday in Fullerton, CA against the Harrisburg City Islanders.

Yazdani began his career in 1998 with Bayern Leverkusen of Germany's Bundesliga. He then returned to Iran the next season before playing 72 games between 2000 and 2003 with Sporting Charleroi of Belgium's top division.

NASL Suspends Herron Two Games For Altercation Versus RailHswks

The North American Soccer League's Disciplinary Committee announced Thursday they have suspended Fort Lauderdale Strikers forward Andy Herron from this Saturday's game at the Puerto Rico Islanders and next week's season finale at the league-best San Antonio Scorpions after an altercation that took place during the teams' 1-0 win over the defending league regular season champion Carolina RailHawks.

Herron is second on the team in goals with eight and tallied four assists so far this season.

Besler Named Final Player Of The Round For 2012 LHUSOC Tournament

Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler, who led his team to a victory over fellow Major League Soccer opponent and three-time defending tournament champion Seattle Sounders last Wednesday for the 2012 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament title, was named Thursday the tournament's final Player of the Round.

He is the player from SKC to win an individual tournament award since the awards were first given out in 2006 and is the second person, joining Seth Sinovic (2004), to win the tournament with their hometown team.

Haynes Takes Over As Silverbacks Head Coach

As expected, Brian Haynes officially took over head coaching duties with the North American Soccer League's Atlanta Silverbacks Thursday, replacing former US Men's National Team star and current Fox Soccer Channel commentator Eric Wynalda, who will remain with the team in his role as an advisor.

Also, the Silverbacks promoted head coach Ricardo Montoya of their reserve team in the semi-professional National Premier Soccer League to assistant coach of the senior Silverbacks' team.

Red Bulls Signs English Veteran Sam

Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls announced the signing Thursday of veteran English midfielder Lloyd Sam.

Between 2003 and 2012, Sam has played for Charlton Athletic, Leyton Orient, Sheffield Wednesday, Southend United, Leeds United and Notts County.

United Trades With Union Before Sunday Meeting In DC

Major League Soccer's DC United announced Thursday they have traded midfielder Danny Cruz to the Philadelphia Union for forward Lionard Pajoy and an international roster spot.

Both teams will meet Sunday at RFK Stadium in our nation's capital.

Cruz joined DC United this January from the Houston Dynamo and had a goal and three assists in 16 games, 12 of them starts.

Pajoy started 16 of 20 games at Philadelphia since joining from Hagui Ditares in Colombia's first division.

USWNT To Play Second Victory Tour Date With Australia September 19

The US Women's National Team, gold medalists at the 2012 London Olympics, announced Wednesday they will play a second game against Australia September 19 at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO, home to Major League Soccer's Colorado Rapids and the USL W-League's Colorado Rapids Women.

The teams are already set to meet September 16 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

The USWNT tour begins September 1 with an exhibition game against Costa Rica September 1 at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

Ferreira Teams With Others To Guide FCD To 2-0 Win

David Ferreira and Zach Loyd teamed at the hour mark on a Fabian Castillo goal, then Ferreira and Jair Benitez worked with Jonathan Top for his first career goal as FC Dallas shut out the host Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0 Wednesday in Major League Soccer play at BC Place.

FC Dallas, 7-11-8 with 29 points and in sixth place in the Western Conference standings, faces Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, UT Saturday.

Vancouver, 10-8-7 with 37 points and tied with the Seattle Sounders (10-6-7) for fourth place point-wise, plays the Sounders Saturday at CenturyLink Field in Seattle Saturday.

Worst Team In MLS' Conferences Play To...What Else?

Darlington Nagbe scored in the 82nd minute off passes from Steven Smith and Eric Alexander as the Portland Timbers, the worst team in Major League Soccer's Western Conference, faced the league's Eastern Conference in Toronto FC in a 2-2 draw Wednesday at BMO Field in Toronto.

Sal Zizzo put the Timbers up first in the 21st minute with an unassisted goal, but Eric Hassli rallied Toronto, matching Zizzo's goal in the 57th minute, then teamed with Ashtone Morgan on Luis Silva's 63rd minute goal, putting Toronto up 2-1.

Toronto is 5-13-5 with 20 points and hosts conference-leading Sporting Kansas City Saturday, while the Timbers, 5-12-6 with 21 points, faces the New York Red Bulls on the road Sunday.

Crew Plays To Draw In First Game Since Urso Death

Playing ten days after the untimely death of 22-year-old midfielder Kirk Urso, Major League Soccer's Columbus Crew returned to the pitch at Crew Stadium Wednesday in a 1-1 draw with the defending league champion Los Angeles Galaxy.

Jairo Arrieta opened the scoring for the Crew in the 47th minute with an unassisted goal, but Sean Franklin and Michael Stephens teamed to help Robbie Keane score the game-tying goal in the 64th minute.

Columbus is 8-8-5 with 29 points and is in seventh place in the Eastern Conference standings. The Crew travels Sunday to play the Houston Dynamo.

Los Angeles, 11-11-4 with 37 points and tied in points for third in the conference with the Seattle Sounders (10-6-7), host FC Dallas August 26.

USMNT Makes History, Wins On Mexican Soil For First Time Versus El Tri

Thanks to an 80th minute pass from Terrance Boyd to Michael Orozco Fiscal, the US Men's National Team, for the first time in team history, defeated Mexico on their home soil with a 1-0 victory Wednesday at Azteca Stadium in Mexico City.

The US now prepares to return to the final phase of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup with a two-game set against Jamaica, beginning on the road September 7, then playing at Crew Stadium in Columbus, OH four days later.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Strikers Lose Restrepo For Rest For Season In Practice Injury; Nagime Released

The Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the North American Soccer League announced Wednesday midfielder Walter Restrepo tore an anterior cruciate ligament and a meniscus this week in a non-contact injury at a team practice and will miss the rest of the season.

The team also announced the release of forward Halili Nagime, who played a total of 23 minutes over two games since joining the Strikers February 15 from Auckland City of the ASB Premiership.

Oduro Leads Fire Over Rapids In MLSRL Action

Dominic Oduro assisted on Daniel Paladini's game-tying goal in the 33rd minute, then scored the game winner off a Steven Kinney pass in the 42nd minute as the host Chicago Fire defeated the Colorado Rapids 3-1 Wednesday in Major League Soccer Reserve Division play at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL.

Victor Paneda also had a goal in the 79th minute off Corbin Bone.

Andre Akpan opened the scoring for the Rapids with an unassisted 26th minute strike.

The Fire are 3-4-0 with nine points and are in fourth place in the league's Central/Mountain Division. Chicago next faces the Houston Dynamo on the road September 10.

The Rapids, 5-3-1 with 16 points, are tied for the division lead with the Dynamo (5-1-1) and plays their final game of the Reserve League season September 11 at FC Dallas.

Legends Sign Second Player In Sanchez

The expansion Las Vegas Legends of the Professional Arena Soccer League announced the signing of their second player in goalkeeper Zeke Sanchez, who recently led the semi-pro Las Vegas Knights to the 2012 Premier Arena Soccer League championship.

Sanchez joins forward Enrique Tovar on the roster.

Earthquakes Lose Salinas For 2-4 Weeks With Strained Hamstring

Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes will be out midfielder Shea Salinas for the next two to four weeks after he suffered a strained hamstring Sunday in a 3-0 Major League Soccer Reserve League victory over the Seattle Sounders, the team announced Tuesday.

Salinas came in off the bench in the 87th minute of Seattle's 2-1 senior level game against the Sounders and made a corner kick that Steven Lenhart eventually headed for the game-winning goal.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

USL PRO Announces Week 19 Player, Team Of The Week

USL PRO announced Tuesday Charleston Battery midfielder Tony Donatelli, who had a brace and an assist in a road victory at the Rochester Rhinos Saturday, was named the league's Player of the Week for Week 19 of the 2012 season.

Here are the other players who were named to the league's Week 19 Team of the Week:

GOALKEEPER
Jose Miranda - Los Angeles Blues

DEFENDERS
Greg Jordan - Harrisburg City Islanders
William Yomby - Richmond Kickers
Josh Rife - Charlotte Eagles

MIDFIELDERS
Orlando Mitchum - Antigua Barracuda FC
Stanley Nyazamba - Richmond Kickers
Chris Salvaggione - Charlotte Eagles
Tom Mellor - Harrisburg City Islanders

FORWARDS
Eli Garner - Dayton Dutch Lions
Max Griffin - Los Angeles Blues

HONORABLE MENTION
Kerry Skeppie - Antigua Barracuda FC
Tamarley Thomas - Antigua Barracuda FC
Jose Cuevas - Charleston Battery
Ryan Richter - Charleston Battery
Nate Thornton - Charlotte Eagles
Juan Guzman - Charlotte Eagles
Lucky Mkosana - Harrisburg City Islanders
Nick Noble - Harrisburg City Islanders
Bryan Burke - Los Angeles Blues
Chris Agorsor - Richmond Kickers
Ronnie Pascale - Richmond Kickers

Week 23 MLS Team Of The Week Announced

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday the members of the league's Team of the Week for Week 23 of the 2012 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Dan Kennedy - Chivas USA

DEFENDERS
Jason Hernandez - San Jose Earthquakes
Markus Holgersson - New York Red Bulls
Arne Friedrich - Chicago Fire

MIDFIELDERS
Fabian Castillo - FC Dallas
Juninho - Los Angeles Galaxy
Graham Zusi - Sporting Kansas City
Camilo Sanvezzo - Vancouver Whitecaps

FORWARDS
Chris Rolfe - Chicago Fire
Steven Lenhart - San Jose Earthquakes
Landon Donovan - Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS Week 23 Player of the Week)

HEAD COACH
Bruce Arena - Los Angeles Galaxy

HONORABLE MENTION
Tim Cahill - New York Red Bulls
Aurelien Collin - Sporting Kansas City
Julian de Guzman - FC Dallas
Michael Farfan - Philadelphia Union
Robbie Keane - Los Angeles Galaxy
Connor Lade - New York Red Bulls
Jeff Larentowicz - Colorado Rapids
Young-Pyo Lee - Vancouver Whitecaps
Dax McCarty - New York Red Bulls
Roy Miller - New York Red Bulls
Andy Najar - DC United
Lee Nguyen - New England Revolution
Sanna Nyassi - Montreal Impact
Heath Pierce - New York Red Bulls
Troy Perkins - Chicago Fire
Dane Richards - Vancouver Whitecaps
Barry Robson - Vancouver Whitecaps
Marcelo Sarvas - Los Angeles Galaxy

Blues Game Versus City Islanders Friday Moved, Sunday Games Stays At Location

Due to a scheduling conflict with Cal State Fullerton, USL PRO's Los Angeles Blues announced their scheduled Friday contest against the Harrisburg City Islanders, meant to be the start of a two-game final home series, will move to Sherbeck Field at Fullerton College, the team announced Tuesday.

Sunday's final regular season home game will take place as expected at Titan Stadium on the CSF campus.

Weaver Fever Strikes Dynamo In MLSRL Win Over SKC

Cam Weaver scored a 17th minute goal off a pass by Josue Soto and converted an 80th minute penalty kick as the host Houston Dynamo shut out Sporting Kansas City 2-0 Tuesday in Major League Soccer Reserve League play at Houston Amateur Sports Park.

The Dynamo, 5-1-1 with 16 points, are tied with the Colorado Rapids (5-2-1) for the lead in the league's Central/Mountain Division and will next host Real Salt Lake September 7.

SKC, in fourth place at 2-4-2 with eight points, hosts RSL September 11.

Pause Out 4-6 Weeks For Fire With Injuries

Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire announced Tuesday midfielder Logan Pause will miss the next four to six weeks after suffering two broken ribs and an injury to the pneumothorax after a collision with former teammate Bakary Soumire in Chicago's 3-1 win over the Philadelphia Union Sunday at PPL Park in Chester, PA.

Nominees Announced For Week 23 MLS Save Of The Week

Voting has opened for fans to select the Week 23 winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2012 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.

Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 23 are Kevin Hartman (FC Dallas), Bill Hamid (DC United), Zach MacMath (Philadelphia Union), Troy Perkins (Montreal Impact) and Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA).



Monday, August 13, 2012

Pappa To Go To Heerenveen After 2012 MLS Season Ends

Chicago Fire midfielder Marco Pappa signed a contract Monday with the Dutch team Heerenveen and will report there January 1, 2013, when the next international transfer window opens.

He will complete the 2012 Major League Soccer season and Chicago will retain his MLS rights when he returns after making a qualifying offer.

Since joining the team on loan from Municipal in his native Guatemala, Pappa has scored 26 goals and assisted on 14 others in 110 career games.

PASL's Tucson Extreme Names Soderman Head Coach

The expansion Tucson Extreme of the Professional Arena Soccer League announced Randy Soderman, a veteran of over 12 years playing in the Continental Indoor Soccer League, National Professional Soccer League, World Indoor Soccer League and Major Indoor Soccer League, as their first head coach Monday.

He played outdoor soccer collegiately at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix.

Another New Women's Pro Soccer League In The Works?

According to OurSportsCentral.com, a minor league sports news website, plans are being created to launch another women's professional soccer league for the 2013 season.

The league would have eight teams and some of the teams have already been named:

- The Boston Breakers and Chicago Red Stars, who played last season in the Women's Premier Soccer League's inaugural Elite League, but were former members of Women's Professional Soccer.

- Sky Blue FC, also an original WPS team, who sat out the 2012 season after WPS folded.

- A team in Seattle.

- A second team on the West Coast.

The Western New York Flash, who played and won championships in WPS and, most recently, WPSL Elite, are also rumored to join the new league.

Organizers of the league say they will work to establish relationships with the Women's Premier Soccer League, its Elite League and the USL W-League.

NASL Names Herron, Arguez Week 19's Top Players

The North American Soccer League announced Monday Fort Lauderdale Strikers forward Andy Herron and FC Edmonton midfielder Bryan Arguez have been named the Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week for Week 19 of the 2012 season.

Herron, who won for the third time this season, scored the game-winning goal in a 1-0 victory over the Carolina RailHawks Saturday at Lockhart Stadium.

Arguez made a key interception before passing the ball to Kenny Caceros, who then assisted Shaun Saiko on Edmonton's goal in a 1-0 win over the Puerto Rico Islanders Sunday.

Red Bulls Run Down DC United In MLS Reserve League Play

Sullivan Dainkeh opened the scoring with a sixth minute goal off Lewis Neal and Josh Wolff had an unassisted strike five minutes later en route to host DC United beating the New York Red Bulls 3-1 Monday in Major League Soccer Reserve League play at DC United's training facility.

Danny Cruz was assisted by Ian Harkes in the 50th minute for United, who are now 2-1-1 with seven points and tied for fourth place in the Eastern Division with the Philadelphia Union (2-3-1). DC next plays at the Montreal Impact September 7.

New York, whose lone goal came in the 32nd minute by Jhonny Arteaga, is 1-4-2 with five points and tied for last place with Toronto FC (1-3-2). The Red Bulls meet the Impact at Saputo Stadium August 21.

Impact Beats Revolution In MLS Reserve League Match

Zachariah Massoudi and Andrew Wenger had unassisted goals and Sinisa Ubiparipovic scored off a Lamar Neagle pass as the Montreal Impact defeated the host New England Revolution 3-1 in Major League Soccer Reserve League play at Gillette Stadium Monday.

Dimitry Imbongo scored for New England in the 45th minute off a Flo Lechner assist.

Montreal, 4-2-1 with 13 points, is in second place in the Eastern Division and hosts DC United September 7.

New England, 2-3-3 with nine points, is in third place in the standings and hosts Toronto FC September 10.

Career-High Assist Night Gives Donovan POTW Honors

Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder Landon Donovan, who assisted a career-high four times in his team's 4-0 win Sunday at The Home Depot Center over host Chivas USA to win the annual SuperClasico series for the fifth straight season and seventh time in the last eight seasons, was named Monday Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 23 of the 2012 season.

He last won the honor in Week 16 after combining for three goals and two assists in games against Real Salt Lake and the Vancouver Whitecaps.

MLS Announces Week 23 Goal Of The Week Nominees

Major League Soccer Monday announced the five nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 23 of the 2012 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Dane Richards of the Vancouver Whitecaps (G1), Jair Benitez of FC Dallas (G2), Chris Rolfe of the Chicago Fire (G3), Sanna Nyassi of the Montreal Impact (G4) and Juninho of the Los Angeles Galaxy (G5).

Galaxy Takes SuperClasico Series For Seventh Time In Eight Seasons Over Chivas USA

Landon Donovan had a career-high four assists, helping Juninho score twice and Robbie Keane and Omar Gonzalez score once each, as the Los Angeles Galaxy won the annual SuperClasico series for the fifth straight season and the seventh time in eight seasons with a 4-0 rout of host Chivas USA at The Home Depot Center, home team for both Major League Soccer franchises, Sunday.

The Galaxy are now 11-11-3 with 36 points and in fifth place in the Western Conference standings. Los Angeles travels to the Columbus Crew Wednesday.

Chivas is now 7-9-5 with 26 points and is tied for sixth in points in the standings with FC Dallas (8-11-8). They will hit the road Saturday to face the Portland Timbers.

Saiko Shot Gives FC Edmonton Win Over Islanders

Shaun Saiko's 32nd minute goal off a Kenny Caceros assist gave host FC Edmonton a 1-0 victory over the Puerto Rico Islanders in North American Soccer League play at Clarke Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada Sunday.

Edmonton is now in seventh place in the league standings at 5-10-6 with 21 points and will face the defending league champion Carolina RailHawks this Saturday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.

Puerto Rico is in third place at 10-7-4 with 34 points and hosts the Fort Lauderdale Strikers Saturday.

Rolfe Brace Gives Fire Victory Over Union

Chris Rolfe scored a brace and Arne Friedrich added another goal as the Chicago Fire defeated the host Philadelphia Union 3-1 Sunday in Major League Soccer play at PPL Park in Chester, PA.

Philadelphia's goal came off an own goal by Chicago's Jalil Anibaba to open the game.

Chicago, 11-7-5 with 38 points, is tied for fourth place in points in the Eastern Conference with DC United (11-8-3), who hosts Chicago August 22.

Philadelphia is 7-12-2 with 23 points and tied for eighth in points with the New England Revolution in the conference (6-12-5). The Union hosts Real Salt Lake August 24.